APOLLO 11 “40TH ANNIVERSARY” LIMITED EDITION The first manned lunar landing on the 20th of July, 1969 was the greatest, most dramatic scientific achievement in human history. When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the moon’s surface at 02:56 GMT on the 21st of July, Aldrin was wearing his OMEGA Speedmaster and a legend was born. An interesting footnote: the electronic timing system on the Lunar Module was not functioning correctly so Armstrong had left his watch aboard as a reliable backup.
Now OMEGA joins the world in the celebration of the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing with the release of the Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch Apollo 11 “40th Anniversary” Limited Edition.
It is fitting that the distinctive timepiece is powered by OMEGA’s famous calibre 1861, the same movement used in the original Speedmaster Professional Moon Watch. The stainless steel casebody is delivered with a stainless steel bracelet which has been upgraded to include OMEGA’s patented screw and pin system.
The black dial also recalls that of the Moon Watch with some key differences. The small seconds counter (sub-dial) has been created in the form of a small medallion which features an adaptation of Apollo 11’s famous mission patch: an eagle descends to the lunar surface with an olive branch representing peace in its claws. In the distance, far above the horizon, the earth is visible. The patch, interestingly, was designed by Michael Collins who remained in the Apollo 11 capsule as Command Module Pilot while his colleagues Armstrong and Aldrin were in the Lunar Module and on the moon.
The watch’s hour, minute and the red-tipped chronograph seconds hands are coated with Super-LumiNova. The minute and hour chronograph counter hands are white and the brushed, rhodium-plated small seconds hand offers an attractive contrast to the medallion on the counter.
Below the words “OMEGA Speedmaster PROFESSIONAL” on the dial, the legend 02:56 GMT – the exact time that Neil Armstrong made his “one small step” onto the moon – is displayed in red.
The 40th Anniversary Limited Edition’s dial is protected by Hesalite, the same robust, shatter-proof acrylic crystal found on the original Moon Watch. Hesalite was ideally suited for use in space – there was no chance that it could break apart and send potentially dangerous fragments into the low-gravity environment. A small, distinctive OMEGA logo has been etched evocatively inside the Hesalite crystal.
The Apollo 11 “Eagle” mission patch is stamped on the caseback along with the words, “THE FIRST WATCH WORN ON THE MOON”, the limited edition number (0000/7969), and “July 21, 1969”, the date Armstrong and Aldrin first stepped onto the moon’s surface at 02:56, the time which is printed on the dial.
The OMEGA Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch Apollo 11 “40th Anniversary” Limited Edition is delivered in a black presentation box which also includes a 42 mm silver medal (the same diameter as the watch) featuring an engraving of the mission patch on one side with the words “APOLLO 11, 40th ANNIVERARY”. On the reverse side, the medal is engraved, “THE EAGLE HAS LANDED”; “LAUNCHED JULY 16 1969”; “LANDED JULY 20, 1969”; and “RETURNED, JULY 24, 1969” along with OMEGA’s name and logo. Also in the presentation box is a certificate of authenticity and an envelope containing a black polishing cloth with information commemorating the historic space flight.
Centuries from now, historians will continue to look back in wonder at the Apollo 11 mission. For the first time ever, human beings had left Earth, walked on another celestial body, and returned safely home. OMEGA will always be proud of the role it played in the greatest scientific adventure of all time.